March 2013

Health and Safety

Low job control at work linked to health conditions

The study, from the Institute of Work & Health (IWH), in Toronto and published in the January/February issue of Canadian Journal of Public Health, looked at more than 6,600 workers between 35 and 60 who had not been previously diagnosed with hypertension, were not self employed and were working more than 10 hours a week for more than 20 weeks in the last year.

“Our interest in this particular piece of work was to look at a group of working-age residents of Ontario to see if there any risk associated with a characteristic of employment called job control and the progression to the development of hypertension,” said Cam Mustard, IWH president and senior scientist. “We might not often think of the onset of hypertension as a work-related condition.”

Toronto mulls licensing for workplaces with blood-borne disease risks

On Feb. 20, the Board of Health presented Toronto councillors with stricter regulations of Personal Services Settings (PSS), which includes tattoo parlours, barber shops, acupuncture facilities, hair salons, body piercing studios and anywhere where workers and their clients are at risk of blood-borne diseases and infections, such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV.

Ontario eyes certification for OHS training providers

At the the annual Canadian Health and Safety Professionals Safety Conference (CanSafePro) in Toronto, Cordelia Clarke Julien, director of training and safety programs branch of the Ontario Prevention Office, gave attendees an update of what is coming down the pipeline with regards to new health and safety related training standards. One of them is the new mandatory certification for training service providers.

Physicians’ Occupational Health & Safety Roles and Responsibilities

This document provides an overview that will help physicians to understand and comply with the Occupational Health and Safety Act. In this article, we look at the 3 primary roles of the physicians in Health and Safety; as Employers, as Supervisors and as Workers. This article also provides a number of resource links and facts and can be posted publicly in any practice.

How to Create a Safe Working Environment

Workplace safety should never be taken lightly with any business.  Doesn’t matter if you’re 1,000 employees strong or 10.  Any businesses regardless of size must account for safety regulations, steps and more detailed options for their staff from the get-go.  Preventative measures against accidents and/or workplace-related deaths are key for fostering a healthy, safe work environment.

Human Resources

Ontario proposes 3 new job-protected leaves for family caregivers

The Ontario government is taking steps to protect the jobs of working men and women in the province who need to care for seriously ill or injured loved ones or deal with a crime-related loss or disappearance of a child.

The proposed Employment Standards Amendment Act (Leaves to Help Families), 2013, would recognize the importance of family and job security, and would build on the existing family medical leave by creating three new job-protected leaves

Work Pressure and Job Control

A national survey of 6,004 Canadian workers confirms that having control over one's work schedule and job autonomy are associated with lower levels of job pressure. However, having more control of one's work can also have negative consequences for individual employees. It depends on the form of job control, according to research by University of Toronto sociologist Scott Schieman.

Federal Court Rules that Employer Has to Accommodate Employee's Childcare Obligations

Employers should pay close attention to a recent decision of the Federal Court on whether an employee’s parental childcare obligations are included in the term “family status” under the Canadian Human Rights Act. Discrimination on the basis of family status is prohibited under the Canadian Human Rights Act.

How to Develop a Human Resource Policy

Developing Human Resource policies is a delicate and sensitive issue in any workplace. However, these policies are essential to help protect the rights of the employers, workers and the customers. This article provides some guidelines on how to develop policies for your workplace. Any HR policies developed should be consulted with an HR or legal professional to ensure compliance with all local laws and regulations.

Government of Canada helps prevent elder abuse and financial fraud in Nova Scotia

“Elder abuse, including financial abuse, is a serious issue that must be addressed,” said Minister of State Wong. “During Fraud Prevention Month, the Government of Canada is reaffirming its commitment to protect the well-being and security of Canadian seniors by supporting activities to prevent elder abuse and financial fraud.”

Ten ways to turn your staff into teammates

It’s something sports teams and the military understand – Boot Camp for the military and pre-season workouts for sports teams are the norm. In business, there is far less interest or appreciation of group development and the need for practice. Team practice, for the most part, is not factored into the business or corporate world.

Industry Updates

BC Emergency Physicians declare Emergency

The ongoing overcrowding in British Columbia's emergency departments (EDs) has reached a crisis point, with physicians now calling for a $10-million investment in solutions.

Between January 2010 and April 2012, there were 40 000 more patient visits to 19 EDs than they were staffed to handle, according to data from BC health authorities.

Physicians should be cautious when prescribing diclofenac

The Feb. 12, 2013 study in PLoS Medicine (2013;10:e1001388) indicates that diclofenac use can increase the risk of heart attack or stroke in patients with pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, high cholesterol or other high risk factors for cardiovascular problems.

The worst-run industry in Canada: Health care

It may be our most cherished social benefit, but what the system needs, experts argue, is corporate sensibility: more rational and co-ordinated leadership, better information on health outcomes and a ruthless determination to eliminate duplication and waste. Because at present, says Robert Evans, a leading health economist and founding member of University of British Columbia’s Centre for Health Services and Policy Research (CHSPR), we’re spending far more than we need to on everything from drugs to doctors to hospitals.

Canadian physicians increasingly turning to EHRs

Across the country, physicians and other healthcare providers are increasingly adopting electronic health records to provide more streamlined and efficient patient care. According to a new Commonwealth Fund report from the Health Council of Canada, 57 percent of primary care doctors said they use EHRs, a figure which has doubled since 2006.

Difficult Patients: Why They're That Way and How to Handle Them

Everyone knows those patients that come in; the ones that nobody wants to deal with. However, all patients come into your practice seeking a service as they are in need. The difficult part becomes how to deal with these patients and what are some of the root issues that are making them so hard to handle. If you can better understand how to identify and respond to these patients, you can make your work life safer and less stressful.

Product Recalls / Advisories

Important information for Hospira infusion pump users March 8, 2013

Health Canada cautions against use of Sensipar in children March 7, 2013

SAMSCA (tolvaptan) - Potential Risk of Liver Damage - For Health Professionals March 1, 2013

Health Canada warns of risks related to synthetic marihuana products February 27, 2013

CATENA (idebenone) - Voluntary withdrawal of CATENA from the Canadian market -For Health Professionals February 27, 2013

Incivek (telaprevir) Combination Treatment - Serious Skin Reactions Reported - For Health Professionals February 27, 2013

Rifadin February 26, 2013

Incivek™ (telaprevir) Combination Treatment - Serious Skin Reactions Reported - For Health Professionals February 22, 2013

Sodium Chloride Injection USP 0.9% February 21, 2013

RITUXAN (rituximab) - Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome - For Health Professionals February 20, 2013

Diagnostic tests manufactured by IND Diagnostic or other private label manufacturers February 8, 2013